A few months ago I went skeet shooting with two friends (Rett and Gary) and my brother in law, Jacob. Rett and Gary grew up hunting and shooting skeet. I grew up on Nerf guns which I thought would translate decently well. Jacob didn’t grow up on guns but has spent the majority of the last 5 years honing his general combat and sniper skills on Halo and Call of Duty. Regardless of my background, I really do think I would do very well in combat. War is Hell, chump, but war against me makes Hell look like a company picnic for kittens. Go ahead and laugh, but it’s true. Sometimes you just know things, you just feel them in your bone marrow. I know that I would do well in combat and that Davis and my younger sister would do poorly, regardless of foot speed. I think BigRy would do well too. I’m not joking. Whatever, I don’t care what you think anyway.
Alpha Thrash, this is BlueDog34. Over. Please toss an Antipersonell grenade at the nagging woman standing 3 clicks to the left of where I’m sitting on the couch because she doesn’t have her priorities straight. Over.
Anyway, so Rett put together this skeet shooting excursion, and he brought all the guns. Even though the last time I shot skeet was at 14 and I don’t have much gun experience, I can usually catch on pretty quickly at physical/mechanical things, so I was excited.
We got to the range, Rett showed us how the guns worked, how the order of the shooting worked, and how to hold the gun when it wasn’t our turn. Why is it that gun people don’t get that when you point the gun at them, but slightly above their head and say “Hold still dog, there’s a mosquito on your ear” that you are just joking? Do you honestly think I’m going to pull the trigger and shoot you in the face with this shotgun? It’s a joke dog, calm down. I don’t even know if it’s loaded or not; it probably isn’t. And why do you think I’m pointing it slightly above your head just incase it is loaded and the trigger mistakenly goes off? Because I’m not stupid and I know what I’m doing, that’s why. Geez. Chill pill.
Anyway, the way it worked was that we each did rounds of 25. The first round or two, Gary and Rett got quite a few more than Jacob and me, which was to be expected. Then Jacob starting getting the hang of it. That’s ok. I don’t care. It’s just a stupid thing anyway. Like I’ll ever have to shoot clay frisbees in my job in the real world. It’s like you told your jr. high math teacher. But I knew I would get the hang of it and catch up the next couple rounds, at least with Jacob. It’s all about leading the pidgeon.
Rett and Gary were getting between 18-22 out of 25. Jacob was maybe round 17. I was at 5 or so. Hard to remember. Between 5 and 22 somewhere. Ballpark. After a few rounds of this everyone stopped coaching everyone else and focused on me. “Ok, I will lead it more and put the stock on my shoulder here and maybe I’ll use those neat techniques to shoot your left foot off if you don’t start minding your own freaking business.”
During this time I was mostly making jokes about them giving me the crappiest gun with a crooked barrel and telling the guy behind us who was pushing the button to stop pulling mine faster than everyone else’s. Rett insisted my gun was actually the best gun. He has his opinion and I have mine. But the worst part was the compliments that came when I hit one, or even winged it. Whenever anyone else hit their pidgeon, the praise came in the form of manly silence. A silence saying “I’m not saying anything because I expected you to hit that pidgoen. Because you’re good and you usually hit them.” But my kill shots were followed by a chorus of enthusiastic complimenting and well-wishing, the type you give a one armed monkey when he doesn’t fall out of the tree. This single experience changed my entire paradigm on how the less-skilled of any given group should be encouraged and cheered on. Silence means you expect me to succeed. Wild raving makes me aware that I have something to be embarrassed about.
I ended up getting to 9 or so out of 25, but I just couldn’t pick it up. Honestly I didn’t want to and didn’t try very hard, because why waste my time with clay when I know I could easily be in Afghanistan sniping Taliban from 1000 yards. Give me a challenge worthy of my skill.